It is the common laymen who make entries in the diary of Syed Shihab. His time belongs to the common man. They adjust their functions- be they marriages, shop inaugurations, housewarmings or conflicts that require mediations- for the presence of Syed Shihab.
It is his maturity in decision-making that attracts the attention of both intellectuals and politicians. It is solely due to his leadership that political blunders committed by Muslim leaders in neighboring states are not repeated in Kerala. His decisions are not based on emotional sentiments.
In Kerala, Syed Shihab does not propose minority communalism in place of majority’s communalism. Rather it is the combined secular force that can save the nation.
Syed Muhammad Ali Shihab is very close to me. I had very close relationship with his father.
Much more than the president of Indian Union Muslim league, he is more closer to me as a friend and a colleague.
Dr. M.K. Muneer
Personally speaking on Syed Muhammad Ali Shihab, in spite of all his greatness, he maintains an extraordinary kind of humility to mingle with the low level workers of the party.
When we visit his house, whether it is tea or other sweets, he directly brings them to us. It is not solely our experience, rather to all those who visit him. His enthusiasm to serve the guests is another specialty in him. These are rare to find in great leaders of today. These little acts of virtue are what make Syed Shihab a great sage.
Syed Basheer Ali Shihab
I have never seen father annoyed except in the case of serving guests. He insists on serving tea to the guests without delay. Decisions in family matters are taken after discussing with our uncles. The final decision is from him.
Most of the days father is traveling. Only Tuesdays he is at home. Even as such, the house will be flooded with visitors from morning to evening. He has no leisure as such even on that day.
Syed Shihab’s school teacher
He studied for few years at MM high school, which was famous for its contributions to education in Malabar. The sports training was an essential part of the curriculum. He showed interest in all sports activities especially badminton.
Syed Shihab and his brothers were the reigning champions for almost two decades. There was a close relationship between his mother’s family and the school. During his school days, his way of life was in tune with the best of Islamic ideals well enough to serve the nation and the community.
Syed Munawwar Ali Shihab
It is only only from the press that I come to know the party’s high command decisions . He does not share such confidential matters with us. On asking about it, he maintains silence.
He is most particular about hospitality towards guests. His breakfast extends to 12 noon, and lunch goes up to 4 or 5pm.